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News, March 2008


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Editorial Note: The following news reports are summaries from original sources. They may also include corrections of Arabic names and political terminology. Comments are in parentheses.


Threatened by Israeli occupation snipers, villagers in Al-Khadr protest construction of Israeli Apartheid Land-Grab Wall

Date: 22 / 03 / 2008  Time:  10:41
Bethlehem Ma'an

About seventy residents of the West Bank village of Al-Khadr, near Bethlehem, staged their weekly nonviolent demonstration on Friday against the construction of Israel's separation wall, which organizers say will result in the de facto confiscation of more than 90% of the town's land.

Men from the village attended the Friday Muslim prayer service on the road leading to the construction site of the wall. Heavily armed Israeli soldiers and border police sealed the road with barbed wire, preventing the demonstrators from approaching the site and forcing civilian traffic to turn back.

Several Israeli snipers were positioned on the adjacent hillside, training their guns directly on the demonstrators. On Wednesday, the Israeli military leadership issued an order allowing Israeli forces to shoot live ammunition at demonstrators who approach the Israeli wall, a move that organizer Samer Jaber feared would discourage many Palestinians from protesting.

The Popular Committee against the Wall and Colonization in Al-Khadr, who organized the demonstration, estimates that the planned route of the wall will annex more than 5,000 acres of the village's land, devastating this predominantly agricultural community.

While Israeli officials claim the wall is for Israel's security, the eight-meter high concrete barrier snakes through the West Bank, isolating Palestinians from one another. The International Court of Justice ruled the wall illegal in 2004.

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